NBA Rumors: Ray Allen and 5 Ideal Free Agents for the Miami Heat
The Miami Heat were not able to do much in light of such a shortened offseason. Their only moves consisted of signing guard Mario Chalmers to a three-year, $12 million extension; signing James Jones to a three-year, $4.5 million deal; and bringing Shane Battier on board in a three-year, $9.4 million deal.
Not much could be done in such a short time, and there were not any viable centers in free agency to reach out to, so Miami made simple but striking moves to improve their roster.
However, this offseason will be a tad bit different. It may not replicate the monstrous ripple of the summer of 2010; the pièce de résistance of Miami’s franchise history. The Heat will never be able to top the recruiting effort.
Yet, it will force the issues of repeated championship appearances, assuming that Miami makes it to the NBA Finals this season. We can’t be too preemptive with our predictions of Miami’s success, as it sure as hell bit LeBron James in the butt.
Miami’s postseason failures thus far, with the Big 3 scowling over South Beach, will not stop Pat Riley from making moves to bring in a credible atmosphere to surround them. If anything, the strength of sprouting franchises like the Chicago Bulls and the OKC Thunder have only forced the issue for Miami to make strong moves for veteran players this summer. Ray Allen is only the surface.
There are plenty of free agents the Heat could go after who could alter Miami’s long-term standings in the regular season and, most importantly, in the playoffs.
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Ray Allen is one of the biggest names, next to Steve Nash, on Miami Heat’s radar—and why wouldn’t he be? No NBA team is above researching the talents of a veteran who could be such a scoring quality to them.
Depending on Allen’s health, he could work himself into Miami’s second unit. Miami could use him behind Dwyane Wade and in game stretches where Miami is searching for a perimeter junkie. Allen can still knock down those threes that everyone has become so accustomed to.
Allen could work himself into Miami’s second unit, therefore losing a starting job in the NBA. Allen hasn’t had to come off the bench for Boston, and it may be less than alluring for Miami to pitch Allen a bench job behind such strong players. The pay cut would also be immense seeing as how Miami is locked into about $78 million in salaries for the 2012 season.
Then again, how solid is his position with the Celtics? As they are excelling without him, Danny Ainge could be looking to make space for younger talent.
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Miami has a solid point guard in Mario Chalmers, but they do not have a great guard in Mario Chalmers. Chalmers plays decent defense and is a streaky three-point shooter. Still, Steve Nash would undoubtedly be an upgrade.
Nash has to be staring down his future with the Phoenix Suns and wondering where the hell this train is headed. He would love to see the Suns load their roster with playoff-surviving talent, but the truth of the matter is the Suns' front office may have reached their ceiling of potential. What’s the true selling chip? There is none.
With Miami, the possibilities are infinite. Miami already has a packed roster, the city, the bright lights and the exclusive league reputation is a start to a great package that Pat Riley could put together. Hand over the championships immediately.
Nash would have to take a huge pay cut. He would no longer be the most illustrious member of his franchise any longer. He would no longer be at the top of the totem pole, as there would automatically be three men ahead of him in line. Yet, it seems like a small price for such a huge payout—a championship ring, that is. He’s made his money. What’s wrong with retiring a champion?
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As much as the New Orleans Hornets have dropped in relevancy since the Chris Paul trade landed the star guard with the Los Angeles Clippers, Kaman is sort of a bright spot for the franchise searching for hope. However, the Hornets are probably going to go young instead of turning the tides and stretching their pockets for someone old(er).
The Miami Heat are searching for that bright light in their lineup; a true center with the size, blocking abilities and post moves to fill the huge void in Miami’s locker room. The lack of strength in the frontcourt is almost as polarizing as Miami’s energy and agility in transition.
Kaman would be a great addition to the lineup as someone who could go toe-to-toe with the league’s stronger finishers around the basket.
Money—the grandiose issue with every agent Miami Heat may look to gather in the offseason. The cap space is limited, and Kaman may be looking for his big payday. Would he be willing to sacrifice dollars in his bank account for a possible championship? That’s something only he knows.
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Dahntay Jones is known in the league for his defensive mentality, and is currently operating under Coach Frank Vogel in the Indiana Pacers' second unit. It doesn’t seem too unlikely that a Miami squad hard-pressed for depth and attempting to play hard-nosed defense every possession would go after him.
Miami would reap the benefits of a great defender, and in light of heightened minutes earlier in the month of March, Jones proved that he could provide solid offense in George Hill’s absence as well.
The Heat are not necessarily on the market searching for another small forward, as they have Shane Battier behind James. However, it could definitely help to have a player who could contribute easy points.
There really isn’t a down side to having Jones on Miami’s bench.
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Jason Kidd’s reputation speaks for itself. As one of the oldest starting guards in the NBA, Kidd is still respected as one of the most effective guards in the league. He won his ring with the Dallas Mavericks, but with reports putting Deron Williams firmly in Texas with the Mavericks, Kidd may be looking for another gig where he is more involved.
Miami’s point guard situation right now is inconsistent. One day Chalmers is that guy. The next day he must have a more reserve-like role under a veteran where he can grow more as a defender and a facilitator.
I can understand why. Even though he put up some honest threes against the OKC Thunder on Wednesday, there was an ugly alley-oop that only reminded fans that this is not a first- or last-time occurrence. Kidd has no problem functioning as the floor general, and he has a more fluid jumper than Chalmers as well.
Money, money, money, money...money!